Paranoid/avoidant personality disorderWatch
Reading online, my symptoms seem to be a combination of Paranoid Personality disorder and avoidant personality disorder.
I've not been formally diagnosed but do take medication for anxiety.
So I've got an appointment at a temporary doctors (I'm at uni) next week. How do I approach the subject? do I tell them I think I have these mental health issues (might come across as a hypochondriac)? or do I just describe my symptoms to them (might be misdiagnosed?). Or do I just ask them to refer me to a psychotherapist?
It's negatively impacting my life quite severely.
For example a frequent situation I find myself in is hiding in my room because I hear somebody outside talking -
my mind convinces me that they're talking negatively about me (paranoia)
I lock my door and hide and try to be as quiet as possible (avoidance/being a hermit)
and a lot of the time I stand behind the door/window and attempt to eavesdrop on the people talking just so I can confirm if they are actually talking about me but I can never hear them clearly which makes my brain convince me even further that they're talking about me.
It is mentally draining as it happens daily.
Someone please help as I know mental health problems don't really emerge until early 20s so I'm afraid I might have some, and I feel worse as I've read that you can't cure paranoid personality disorder.
It is possible that you have Paranoid/Avoidant PD, however I would hesitate to formally diagnose yourself. It is also possible that you could have a more general anxiety disorder-in fact you yourself said you take meds for anxiety-or a severe social phobia emerging as a bi-product of that anxiety. This would especially be true if your paranoia hasn't involved any other, more 'unusual' thoughts or beliefs about who is talking to you (for example an organisation is monitoring you and you genuinely believe that despite no hard evidence to confirm the belief).
From what you are describing it is more likely that your anxiety is getting on top of you lately and it is emerging in the form of social phobia and sub-clinical paranoia; people talking about and judging you negatively.Sometimes new unresolved, or chronic daily (unmanaged) stress can trigger these types of thoughts; have there been any big changes in your life recently, any significant stress?
You should share everything you can with your GP-they are not going to think you are a hypochondriac and that term is rarely used without good reason either! They will, I would imagine, suggest some form of therapy or at least coping skills for continuing managing your anxiety and negative/irrational thoughts and beliefs about yourself and the world around you.
Best of luck, the Mental Health Support Society is open if you are ever in need of someone to talk to.
I have AvPD, was diagnosed in Jan by a psychiatrist. Was previously diagnosed with social anxiety disorder and depression by a different shrink. I had suspected I might have AvPD months before my diagnosis, and when I went to see a GP about it my suspicions were completely dismissed: 'You absolutely don't have a personality disorder'. Doctors in general don't like patients to diagnose themselves (and do their job for them). Because of what I experienced, I would recommend you go and find a GP who specialises/is interested in mental health and maybe even ask for a referral to a psychiatrist. They can assess you, make a diagnosis, prescribe meds if needed and refer you to a therapist. CBT is supposed to be the best form of therapy for AVpD, anxiety etc. I wouldn't recommend psychodynamic therapy, did absolutely nothing for me.
Good luck! Avoidance is the worst and I wouldn't wish it on anyone.